Brisbane City Council has put out a number of transformative ideas as part of its 2013-14 City Centre Master Plan. One of these proposals will see Central Station re-imagined as a grand city gateway.
According to the design team, which is led by Bureau Proberts and also includes Urban Art Projects and Ai3D, Central Station is a pivotal piece of the fabric of the Brisbane CBD, which started out in the early 20th Century as an ambitious, forward thinking initiative with a strong effective design narrative which the new project seeks to recover.
The proposal aims to bring about a renewed precinct that will make 21st Century Brisbane even more of a place to connect, commute and be proud of. After the design team conducted studies on the area's rich history, they chose to base the new design on blueprints of the original drawings of the Central Station.
The architects reinterpret ed an original 1902 section plan to create the new project. A new lower circulation level beneath the tracks will ensure the station above is free from impediments, creating a grand space which is open to the sky and linked to the movement and activity of train travel.
The lower level will be connected to Anzac Square, providing two large entries for CBD commuters. Upon entering, visitors will enter into a new vibrant, active, bright space with escalators to carry people to the platforms above.
The Central Station heritage building will be restored to create a landmark/attraction for commuters and tourists alike. A new Anzac Museum and bookshop will welcome the public in and allow them to learn about national history.
Sculptural ‘shaded canopies’ will permit natural light to the station's main space, highlighting the existing heritage building as the station’s public arrival destination. Additional connections will be provided by circulation tubes to Spring Hill.
Site-specific artworks for Brisbane Central Station will help turn a visit to the station into a truly unique and memorable experience. Art will be reflected in pedestrian passageways, train tunnels and ephemera within the station.
“Pedestrian circulation tubes will become landmark opportunities celebrating the procession of the commuter; arrival/departure portals will be wrapped in digital skins that respond to the movement of trains; intimate moments will be created by ephemera carried by commuters and dispersed through the city, engaging the greater populace,” the architects explained.
While the station plan is but a proposal at this point, City Centre Master Plan ideas are intended to stimulate conversation and capture the community’s attention and imagination. Residents are encouraged to vote online for their favourite ideas to transform Brisbane.
So far, online surveys show that the community has supported the upgrade/revamp of Central Station in order to improve access to public transport and connectivity. The results of the online feedback show that people want the design to be sympathetic to the original heritage building and the War Memorial/Anzac Square while also providing improved access to the station.